Browse Prior Art Database

Temporary BPEL Variables

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000030084D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Jul-27
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Jul-27
Document File: 1 page(s) / 4K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Business Process Execution Language for Web Services (BPEL4WS) is an evolving OASIS standard for defining business processes that orchestrate the execution of Web Services. The language provides for the definition of variables. These variables are used in receiving data from invoked Web Services as well as sending data to Web Services. A workflow management system typically makes those variables persistent; that it writes the content of variables to a persistent storage when it has completed a navigation step. As persisting variables is an expensive operation, it is desirable to avoid persisting variables that are only used as variables for temporarily holding values. Without any further information, the workflow management system is not able to determine precisely the usage of each variable. It is suggested that additional information is provided for BPEL variables, which allows the workflow management system to determine whether the variable needs to be made persistent or not.

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Temporary BPEL Variables

Business Process Execution Language for Web Services (BPEL4WS) is an evolving OASIS standard for defining business processes that orchestrate the execution of Web Services. The language provides for the definition of variables . These variables are used in receiving data from invoked Web Services as well as sending data to Web Services. Manipulation of the variables is via the <assign> activity. Variables are defined via the <variable> statement. The set of variables is enclosed in the <variables> element. Variables can either be of type WSDL messages or XML schema. The following code snippet defines a variable which holds, within an order process, the order number:

<variables>

<variable name="OrderNumber type="xsd:integer"/>

</variables>

    A workflow management system typically writes the content of variables to some persistent store to be able fro example to restart /continue navigation after some failure or after the process has been waiting for some user input /completion of some invoked application. As making variables persistent is an expensive operation it is desirable to avoid this as much as possible. In some cases, the workflow management system is able to automatically detect whether a variable is only used for temporarily holding values. In many other cases, this is not possible at all and additional information needs to be provided by the process modeler . This additional information could be provided by decorating variables wi...